NRL News

Doctors must not forcibly abort baby of woman with learning difficulties, appeal judges rule

by | Jun 25, 2019

The woman’s mother successfully appealed against the original decision.

“We rejoice that common sense and basic decency has prevailed, and the mother and baby have escaped this appalling fate.”

By SPUC—the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children

The decision to order a 22-week pregnant woman to be subject to an abortion against her will has been overturned in the Court of Appeal.

Victory In Court Of Appeal

On Friday, Mrs. Justice Lieven agreed with the unnamed woman’s doctors that an abortion would be in her “best interests,” despite admitting that it would be against her will.

However, the woman’s mother, a former midwife who has said she will care for the baby, mounted a challenge. Yesterday evening three appeal judges overruled Judge Lieven’s decision. Lord Justice McCombe, Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Peter Jackson said they would give reasons for their decision at a later date.

Her Baby Would Be Dead…But She’d Get A New Doll

During the appeal hearing, details of what the woman had been told about abortion came to light. Barrister Fiona Paterson, who led the legal team for the NHS hospital trust with responsibility for the woman’s care, told the three appeal judges: “She was told she would go to sleep.

“She would have an operation and when she woke up the baby would no longer be in her tummy. But she would get a new doll.”

Miss Paterson added that she had already been given a doll, and it was “thought to be in keeping with her current level of understanding of the pregnancy” and that doctors believed “the prospect of a new one might be very appealing to her.”

Abortion Crusading Judge

Serious questions are now being asked about why Justice Lieven, who has a long history of abortion advocacy, was able to make such an appalling decision. As a lawyer, Nathalie Lieven represented the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) in 2011 in their crusade to allow home abortions.

From 2015 to 2018, Judge Lieven represented the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission as it launched legal action against Northern Ireland’s government, arguing that their pro-life law violated the human rights of women and girls.

This Must Never Happen Again

John Deighan, SPUC’s Deputy CEO welcomed the overturning of the decision, saying: “This is amazing news. The initial decision to form an abortion on a disabled woman against her will, when her mother had promised to look after the child, caused shock and outrage around the world. A forced abortion is one of the worst things that can be done to a woman, and it is beggars belief that a judge of this land advocated this kind of cruelty and barbarity.”

Deighan continued, “We rejoice that common sense and basic decency has prevailed, and the mother and baby have escaped this appalling fate. The attention must now turn to giving this family all the support they need in an undoubtedly difficult situation. Serious questions must now be asked about how this decision happened, and the country will need assurances that this will never happen again.”

A demonstration planned outside the Houses of Parliament about the case is still going ahead, to show solidarity with the family and to demand that such a situation never arises again.

Categories: Abortion
Tags: abortion